Today we’d like to introduce you to Angelic Garza.
Angelic, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I graduated cosmetology school in 2005. During my last month of my education, a representative from a local hair replacement facility had visited our school and gave a presentation. That was my first time ever hearing about the hair loss industry. It was so intriguing that I decided to pursue a career with them. My classmates thought it was a bad idea because, like most people, they thought I would only have a clientele of “old people”. I didn’t care – I wanted to help people. I applied for a position and took the job right out of school. I spent nine years there and ended up hitting a stagnant place in my career. There was no room for growth.
Starting a business wasn’t easy….physically, emotionally or mentally. I had to be especially strategic because I had a non-compete clause in place that required me to be outside of a 30 mile radius in order to practice my trade. I sought legal counsel and was given specific do’s and don’ts of which I followed to a T.
I opened La Maison de Cheveux March 1, 2013 knowing there was a risk of being sued and a risk that I wouldn’t have enough clientele to keep the flow. Three months later, my husband moved out and filed for divorce. I went from a dual income, to a single income to no income. Take all of that, and add the stress of providing for two kids. For the first time in my adult life, I found myself needing government assistance to feed my children and myself. It was the most humbling moment of my life.
About three months after the split, I got served a lawsuit from my former employer for violating the non-compete. I didn’t know what to do. I already had no income let alone, money to retain an attorney. I prayed a lot. I turned to my faith because there was no other direction to turn. I feared having to dissolve my business because of it. So, I submitted my documents to Legal Shield, which I had purchased this legal insurance 11years prior. I got a call back from the paralegal and I expected to be quoted this large sum for a retainer. It turned out that part of the benefits of this membership was that I accrued pre-trial hours. I had enough hours to cover the entire process! I knew God had my back.
It wasn’t over. The threats from my former employer kept coming in. Threats to exhaust my prepaid hours. I was told that 100k was set aside to pursue me in court. Offer letters and phone calls were made to my clients offering them FREE hair and services for 1 year if they went back. When I found out about that, I cried. That’s a very enticing offer. I can’t compete with that! They were very aggressive with that offer and it went on for several months. Not one person accepted it! As a matter of fact, more of my former clients were leaving that facility and coming to me. The lawsuit took about 2 years. Although I have to keep the outcome confidential, here I am now just opened my second location!
Side story: During this time, I was also working on releasing a beauty tool that I invented. I designed and patented a new eyelash curler called Lash Leaf. I officially brought it to market Nov 26, 2016! It is manufactured here in Tempe, AZ. This is a whole other story though.
Has it been a smooth road?
No, I was sued by my former employer. As a small business owner, you assume many and ALL roles….CEO, CFO, CMO, COO, Stylist, psychologist, magician and the custodian….not to mention being a single mother of 2 and everything that entails.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
My salon specializes in non-surgical hair replacement. It is not a pill or a powder. What I do is basically, give bald people hair. I use top quality disposable hair pieces. The concept and objective is believability rather than durability. I sell instant gratification. I don’t do transplants. I don’t use or sell old, outdated hair technology. What sets my company apart is my attention to detail. My clients aren’t just a number. Every person has hair tailored specifically for them. Plus, I have a 100% retention rate!
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Phoenix is a great place all year round. Plus, the city offers great resources for entrepreneurs to learn and build their business.
- Address: N Phoenix – 19805 N 51st ave/Suite 15/Glendale, AZ 85308
Scottsdale – 9689 N Hayden Rd/Suite 10/Scottsdale, AZ 85258